COMMUNITY volunteering runs in the family for Morpeth Brownie Leader Helen Rose.
So it was no surprise that after joining the Brownies more than 50 years ago, she is still as dedicated to the organisation today.
And to recognise her 40 years of hard work as a leader, Mrs Rose is now preparing to receive a long-service award at Girlguiding Northumberland’s AGM next month.
Mrs Rose first became involved with the organisation in 1961 when she joined the 1st Shirley (St James’) Brownies near Solihull, Warwickshire.
She progressed as a Guide and Ranger, before becoming an Assistant Leader in 1972 with the same unit.
She said: “Although having two boys, I continued my involvement with Girlguiding and the Brownies. The boys would go to my parents’ home for tea every Thursday and I would go along to Brownies.”
Her family were supportive of Mrs Rose’s activities as she had been brought up in a long tradition of volunteering.
Both her mother and father have received the Scout Association’s Medal of Merit, which recognises meritorious conduct of an exceptional standard, due to their support of the 1st Shirley Scouts and Cub Scouts, while her two brothers are active Scout leaders in the Midlands and her sister is a Guide leader in Bristol.
When Mrs Rose moved to Morpeth with her family in 2004 through her husband’s work, she immediately got in touch with Girlguiding Northumberland to offer her help and was snapped up as Snowy Owl with the 1st (St Robert’s) Brownie unit, where she continues to serve as Assistant Leader.
“As a leader with Girlguiding I have had the pleasure over the last 40 years of watching girls grow and achieve, which has been an incredibly rewarding experience,” she said.
“One girl who started as a Brownie with my unit in Shirley went on to become the leader with the unit when I left — history repeated itself.”
Mrs Rose, who is a familiar face in Morpeth as a member of staff at Morrisons, was presented with a special Girlguiding vase from the Brownies and flowers from Divisional Commissioner Elaine Callaghan in recognition of her service.
Mrs Callaghan said: “Helen’s work over the past 40 years has had an immense impact on so many young women in helping them to develop as individuals and to encourage them to take all the opportunities that are offered.
“We really do thank her for all that she has done and look forward to continuing to enjoy working with her in Morpeth.”
Girlguiding aims to offer girls and young women the opportunity to have fun and grow in confidence in a safe, girl-only space.
For more information about the organisation call 07531 900936 or email Morpethdivisiongg@hotmail.co.uk